FA newsletter 12/2/2012: Next Steps on CHE Amendments

Dear Colleagues,

As you may already know, Provost Nicklow has approved only a very small proportion of the Credit Hour Equivalency amendments to departmental Operating Papers at SIUC.  Some departments have received messages indicating that he is offering to communicate “in writing about suggested modifications,” rather than holding a meeting, or that he is designating another individual to meet with Faculty–in other words,  sidestepping the contractual process. Addendum B  clearly indicates that the next step after a Provost non-approval is for the Provost (himself) to meet with the department Faculty. We urge you to follow the contractually mandated sequence and proceed with these meetings, whether or not the provost has offered a different option. Please let us know if you encounter problems in achieving this. We know that you have worked hard on these amendments, and they deserve the administrative attention mandated in Addendum B.

The meeting with the Provost is not the last step in this process.  According to new deadlines agreed upon this past summer, the meetings with the Provost should occur by December 14. The next steps are:

  •  If the meeting with the Provost results in a “proposed modified amendment,” then that modified amendment will be voted on by department tenured and tenure-track Faculty (excluding chairs). A simple majority of those voting is enough to pass the modified amendment at this point, even if your operating paper procedure is different. According to the new deadlines, these votes must be held by February 2, 2013.
  • If there is no agreed-upon modified amendment, or if the modified amendment does not pass the vote, then by February 8, 2013, the Provost must notify the Faculty Association President and request that a Bargaining Committee be formed to try to reach agreement. The Bargaining Committee will have five members appointed by the Association and five members appointed by the University.  Bargaining must begin within 30 days of the date that the Association received the Provost’s notification. If the Bargaining Committee can’t reach agreement, then they must ask for mediation.
  • If mediation doesn’t produce an agreement, then an external panel will be formed with three members from outside SIUC, including an arbitrator with experience in higher education.  The decision of this panel will be final and binding.  Please see Addendum B for more details on this process.

This is a complex procedure, but it is designed to maximize Faculty participation and ensure that these amendments reflect the work that we do. In order to make it work, it is vital to adhere to the contract. If you have questions or wish to report difficulties in following the mandated procedures, please contact Ryan Netzley at ranetzley@gmail.com.

For the SIUCFA Executive Committee,

Rachel Stocking

Association President